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Where do I start?

A great place to start is by doing some research on the various programs available to you. Then, book an appointment with your study abroad advisor to discuss your options and how to begin your application.

Am I eligible to study abroad?

Sophomores, juniors and seniors in good academic and disciplinary standing are eligible to study abroad for a year, semester or summer. A minimum GPA of 2.3 is usually required to study abroad, but each program has varying GPA requirements. You must have completed a minimum 12 credits in the semester prior to studying abroad and be free of any holds on your account prior to departure. Students from all majors are eligible to study abroad.

I am a transfer student. Am I eligible to study abroad?

Yes, but it is important to plan ahead. You may find it difficult to study abroad in your senior year due to Senior Seminar requirements. Transfer students are required to complete 16 credits at Arcadia before studying abroad.

Can someone who studies abroad still graduate on time?

Yes, with advanced planning and appropriate expectations. Academic advisors and Study Abroad Advisors will help you identify a program that fits your educational goals and enables you to stay on track.

Arcadia's Undergraduate Curriculum makes it easier than ever to meet graduation requirements when studying abroad. Rather than a checklist of required courses, Arcadia's curriculum encourages you to explore a wide range of subjects across disciplines.

How many semesters can a student study abroad?

You have multiple opportunities for international experiences. Students in the First Year Study Abroad Experience (FYSAE) or Second Year Study Abroad Experience (SYSAE) often spend another semester abroad during junior year. Arcadia's Majors Abroad Programs (MAPS) require two semesters abroad. You can explore all of your short, medium and long-term options with your academic advisors and study abroad advisor.

How do I apply for a passport?

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months past the program end date. US citizens can find information on how to apply for a passport here. Keep in mind that it may take 6-8 weeks to receive your passport, so don't delay! If you are not a US citizen, you should contact your consulate or DSO if you need to renew your passport.


Choosing a Program

When can I study abroad?

Arcadia supports students studying on long-term programs: summer, semester, and academic year. When you choose to study abroad will likely be based on your personal interests and academic goals. Be sure to talk with your academic advisor as early as possible to integrate studying abroad into your academic plan.

If you are looking to study abroad for a shorter amount of time, Arcadia offers options including  Preview and Global Field Studies courses.

What programs can I go on?

As long as you are eligible (based on your GPA and other requirements) and comply with all study abroad policies and procedures, you can study abroad on pre-approved programs, which can be found here.

What should I consider when choosing a program?

  1. Academics: consider your program choice in regards to your major and academic goals. There are many programs that can complement your major studies at Arcadia, or offer unique classes that you cannot take in Glenside. What are your goals?
  2. GPA: each program will have its own GPA requirement. You can find this on the program page of each program. There may be two different GPAs listed:
    1. Recommended: This is the recommended GPA that students are generally required to have in order to be accepted.
    2. Consideration: This is the GPA that the program may consider. Whether or not you are accepted will likely be dependent on additional materials like a GPA statement and a letter of reference.
  3. Location: think about what kind of location you would most enjoy. Big city or small town? Coastal region or rural area? Field research or travel? It is worthwhile to consider your personal goals as well - do you want to be more adventurous? Learn how to surf? Live in a bustling international city? Be surrounded by art?
  4. Language: you may want to consider your language proficiency as well. Many Arcadia programs offer students the opportunity to improve your language skills, whatever their current level.
  5. Cost: while students who participate in an Arcadia University pre-approved program pay the same tuition as in Glenside, some regions of the world have a higher cost of living, as well as currency that is worth more than the US dollar. All programs have an estimate of additional expenses, which can be found on the program page. Simply scroll down to the "fees and scholarship details" then select "more info."

Are there internship or research options?

Yes. There are many programs that include an internship or research opportunity over the semester and summer. Ask your study abroad advisor for more information if you are interested in one of these options.

What if I am not sure about spending a whole semester abroad?

Arcadia has pioneered a number of programs designed to introduce students to study abroad and give them a taste of what an entire semester would be like:

  • Preview: offered during spring term to eligible first year and transfer students for a low cost that includes transportation, housing and programmed activities.
  • Global Field Study: may be offered in fall, spring, or summer semesters and available to juniors and seniors with some open to graduate students as well. Global Field Studies courses are taken over the course of a semester on the Glenside campus and include an additional off-campus field study, typically lasting 1-2 weeks.
  • Summer Programs: Arcadia offers a variety of summer programs where students can take a few courses, participate in an internship or in research. Note: if students study abroad over a summer, their financial aid will not be carried over.



Will the grades and courses count?

Yes! Students who study on Arcadia pre-approved programs will receive letter grades that count towards your undergraduate GPA. Your application and pre-departure advising guarantees that all credits will count and transfer. All students must maintain full-time status abroad.

How do I pick my courses?

  1. Start by thinking about what classes you need to take, which ones you want to take, and which classes you can be flexible about. Look over your academic plan and discuss options with your academic adviser. Once you have a list of requirements you still need to fill, you can begin figuring out what classes you should take abroad.
  2. You can then begin to explore the courses available at your chosen study abroad program. Each program page has a course section where you can find loads of valuable information (make sure you read through all of it!) and the direct link to the course catalog so you can begin selection course preferences.
  3. Most foreign universities have different academic credit systems so it’s important to understand how the credits of your program match up with the Arcadia system so that you pick appropriate classes.
  4. Once you have selected a few programs of interest, make an appointment with a study abroad adviser to review your program options and course selections.
  5. The final step is to consult with your Academic adviser about your selections and overall academic plan. To see how courses from a university abroad have transferred to Arcadia University in the past, please visit Arcadia’s transfer equivalency portal. Should any course change upon arrival, communicate with your advisers and resubmit as needed.

What is a Global Connections Reflections course?

This is a key Integrative Learning Experience in Arcadia's Undergraduate Curriculum. All students complete this course while engaging in an experience in a cultural context different from the one in which they grew up. This course assists students in reflecting on the interconnections, interdependence, and inequality they encounter during the experience in working to understand the world and their part in it.

Students will be automatically enrolled in this 2 credit, online course when they study abroad. If you have already taken this course, it will be your responsibility to un-enroll from the course.

At a some Arcadia Centers, the following pre-selected cornerstone courses also fulfill the Global Connections Reflection requirement.

    • GRAN ANTH 250 - Cultural Diversity in Contemporary Spain: Migrations, Identities and Historical Heritage
    • LONS SOCG 285 - London: Experiencing the Global City



How do I start an application?

Once you have met with your study abroad advisor and they have approved you to take the next steps in the process, you can begin the application for your program choice through the Arcadia Abroad portal. There are three steps to this application:

  1. Go to PortalGuard and select the ArcadiaAbroad tile. This is your personalized portal for your ArcadiaAbroad application.
  2. Submit the initial online application (this is where you provide some basic information, including your GPA, program choice, contact information, etc.)
  3. Complete the additional application forms in the Arcadia Passport (like your transcript, passport, and more). The "admissions forms" must be completed by the application deadline, which you can find on each program page. 

Note: As you work on the application, you can also use these helpful Application FAQs offered by The College of Global Studies.

How do I complete the "supplemental form" asking for Study Abroad Approval?

Please fill out the contact information for your study abroad advisor in this form.

Note: this will not be marked as complete until you have provided your signed Course Approval Form to your study abroad advisor.

What is the role of my Program advisor?

Once you have submitted your application and have been accepted to a program, you will be assigned a Program Advisor at The College of Global Studies. This Program Advisor is an expert in the program you have chosen to apply to and will help you through the pre-departure processes. You can ask your Program Advisor questions about topics like: submitting participation forms in the Arcadia Portal, differences between housing options, enrolling/registering for courses, applying for your visa, program details, life overseas, etc.

Your Program Advisor will be your main point of contact once you are accepted and will provide you with important and helpful information, so be sure to check your email and voicemail regularly for communication from them. If you have any questions about Arcadia University processes like financial aid or course approval, you should be in contact with the appropriate staff on campus. 

How long does it take to find out if I am accepted to the program?

Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis and most are made within about two weeks of completing the "admissions forms" in the Arcadia Portal. However, each program is different so it is best to be in touch with your study abroad advisor about this.



How do I commit to the program?

Once you are accepted to a program, you will need to formally commit to the program to secure your space. To do this, you must submit:

  • Enrollment Agreement: Enrollment Agreement: this will be accessible in your ArcadiaAbroad portal once you are accepted. Please complete and submit through the portal.
  • $500 Deposit: this payment can be made with a credit/debit card through your Arcadia Passport or by check and delivered to the Finance Office at 777 Limekiln Pike.

Who will help me with preparing once I am accepted and committed to the program?

Once you are accepted and committed to the program, your Program Advisor will help you prepare for the next few steps. 

What is a visa and how do I get one?

A visa is a travel document issued by a foreign government, which gives you permission to legally enter the country. Visa application processes and regulations vary by country, and not all programs will require that students get a visa. Once you are accepted into a specific program, your program advisor will guide you through the process of getting a visa if one is required.

What is a Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO)?

Arcadia will host a mandatory Pre-Departure Orientation on campus. This usually occurs on a weekend shortly before Reading Day. Please be in touch with your study abroad advisor if you do not know when or where the PDO is taking place. Note: this in-person meeting is a compliment to the online materials that will be shared with you by your Program Advisor.



What will tuition and housing cost?

For an Arcadia student, spending a semester or an academic year studying abroad through any of Arcadia University’s approved programs around the world, the cost of tuition and housing will be based on the Glenside rate, however some housing options could incur additional fees.

If a meal plan is required, students will pay the fee charged by the overseas program.


Tuition Remission for Study Abroad

Dependent children and spouses of Arcadia University employees are eligible to apply tuition remission benefits to in person or online study on The College of Global Studies (TCGS) center-based programs. The tuition portion of the TCGS program fee qualifies for tuition remission. This benefit can be used for semester or summer programs. 

As of July 2022, the following TCGS programs are eligible for tuition remission: Arcadia in London (semester & summer), FYSAE (semester), SYSAE (semester), Arcadia in Granada (semester & summer), Intern Philly (semester & summer), the Arcadia Abroad Global Center (semester & summer), Arcadia Abroad Virtual Global Internships (semester & summer), Dublin Internship (summer), Arcadia in Sydney (summer), Museum Studies Internship (summer), Scottish History (summer).

The Arcadia in London and London Internship semester programs offer optional course enrollment at local universities and the Arcadia in Granada program offers an optional pre-session, the supplemental fees for which are the responsibility of the participant. 

Tuition remission benefits are available beginning the first full semester after one full year of employment. Dependent children and spouses planning to study abroad must also apply for financial aid by completing all required federal, state, and institutional applications. Financial aid awards will be applied in the same manner as described above for dependent children and spouses attending the Glenside campus.

Tuition Exchange for Study Abroad

Tuition Exchange students are eligible to apply their tuition benefits to in person or online study on The College of Global Studies center-based programs. The tuition portion of the TCGS program fee qualifies for Tuition Exchange. This benefit can only be used for semester study. 

As of July 2022, the following TCGS programs are eligible for Tuition Exchange: Arcadia in London, FYSAE, SYSAE, Arcadia in Granada, Intern Philly, and Arcadia Abroad Virtual Global Internships.

The Arcadia in London and London Internship semester programs offer optional course enrollment at local universities, and the Arcadia in Granada program offers an optional pre-session, the supplemental fees for which are the responsibility of the participant.

What services are included in the tuition cost? 

All program fees include a spectrum of pre-departure and in-country services such as orientation to help provide you with the information you need to learn and explore your new location. Arcadia’s in-country staff also provide a safety and support infrastructure. Services included in program fees are the following:

  • Tuition
  • Guaranteed housing
  • Overseas orientation program run by Arcadia staff
  • Medical insurance
  • Pre-departure advising, support and orientation for students and your families
  • Some cultural excursions
  • Safety and security management plans
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Student service support by Arcadia staff in-country

What other expenses can a student expect?

Travel, books, visas and other costs vary by program and country. To help families plan, you can find an "Estimate of Additional Expenses" by clicking on the program page, scrolling down to the "Fees and Scholarship Details" section and click on "More Info."

Do financial aid and scholarships apply to study abroad? 

Yes. Scholarships, grants and loans (including Arcadia University merit scholarships and other institutional aid) apply to study abroad on one of the pre-approved programs. The only parts of your financial aid package that do not travel with you are work study and RA stipends.

Are there other scholarships available?

Yes! Many Arcadia students are eligible for scholarships like the Gilman Scholarship. Ask your study abroad advisor what other scholarship opportunities may be available to you.


You should be sure to review the refund and withdrawal policies for any program before depositing, including Arcadia programs. If you are considering withdrawing, please be in touch with your study abroad advisor.


Support Overseas

What should I consider about health and safety?

First, you can find a wealth of information about staying healthy overseas, insurance and more here.

In addition, you should discuss your study abroad plans with your doctor, physician, psychologist and/or psychiatrist as early as possible to discuss how you will manage any current conditions overseas and how you will bring any current prescriptions overseas.

And finally, you should be sure to disclose any current conditions, academic accommodation, disability accommodation, etc to your Program Advisor so that they can best support you.


If after meeting with a study abroad advisor you are still not able to identify an Arcadia study abroad program that fits your plan of studies, you may want to consider participating in an Affiliated or Non-Affiliated program. Course transfers and costs vary by program, so be sure to connect with a study abroad advisor before applying.

Is insurance included?

Arcadia enrolls all students (except New Zealand) in International SOS.

Students studying in New Zealand are instead enrolled in Student Safe Insurance due to federal standards. Student Safe does not cover pre-existing conditions, but students who have such conditions can get additional insurance through International SOS. Talk to your Program Advisor if you have any questions. 

What kinds of support are available to me while abroad?

Arcadia programs have plenty of in-country staff who can help you with any issues you have, from financial to housing to managing culture shock. They should be your first stop for any issue that you have while abroad.

Arcadia also has a 24/7 emergency support team here in the US.



Can I study abroad if I have a disability?

Yes. Arcadia University encourages students with disabilities to consider study abroad. We are committed to working with you to find a program that suits your individual needs and provide reasonable accommodations.


Yes. The first step is to meet with Arcadia's Disability Support Services to ensure they have all of your disability documentation. After that, schedule an appointment with your study abroad advisor to help you find a program that fits for your individual needs.


Students of Color

What should I consider when choosing a study abroad program?

Studying abroad offers the opportunity to explore your identity and your place in the world. Racial and ethnic relations vary by culture, meaning that while you’re abroad you may be part of an ethnic majority for the first time in your life. Also, you could be presented with an amazing opportunity to connect with and learn about your ancestral history and culture first-hand. On the other hand, students of different ethnic and racial backgrounds may have a challenging transition from life in your community to life as a student in a different culture. People may categorize and interpret your race, ethnicity and other identity attributes quite differently than what you are used to. There is the possibility that you may encounter microaggressions or overt discrimination.

You may find that confronting and coping with your adjustment abroad can be a positive growth experience, even if challenging at times. You can prepare yourself for the situations you may encounter by researching the minority and majority racial/ethnic composition of your host country and exploring its history of racial and ethnic relations.

You can also connect with Study Abroad Mentors who are also students of color. STAMPs can share information, stories and advice that they learned from their own experiences.

Will my experience overseas look different than my white peers? If so, how?

No two students studying abroad ever have quite the same experience, even in the same program and country. This same variety is true for students of color and those from US minority ethnic or racial backgrounds. It is wise to know what you are getting into and prepare yourself. Those experiences range from being free of the context of US race relations to those who are met with both familiar and new types of ostracism and prejudice.

No matter what, you have people who can support you - both in Glenside and abroad.

How can I find familiar products and food relative to my culture?

This is very dependent on your host city. In some cases you can find stores that sell hair and skin care products that you use now. You can search for products and shops online or ask a study abroad advisor for help in doing so. However, if your hair and skin care products are not available in your host city, it may be a good idea to simply pack enough for the summer/semester/year and bring it with you. As for food, in-country staff can assist you with finding appropriate grocery stores, markets, and restaurants that represent a variety of cuisines and tastes.

How can I find diverse neighborhoods in my host city?

Arcadia overseas staff will be a great resource for you overseas. While they already plan excursions to neighborhoods in your host city, if you would like to visit additional locations, just let them know and they can assist you.

Can I see a therapist or counselor of color while overseas?

Yes. Your international health insurance while studying abroad and can see a therapist or counselor of color in person or virtually. However, in some locations, this may only be available virtually. It is best to plan early around your mental health so we recommend reaching out to our Health & Safety Team to take the first steps to scheduling appointments before you depart the US. You can contact our Health & Safety Team directly here or connect with your Program Advisor to put you in touch.


First Generation Students

I will be the first in my family to study abroad, how can I plan and make sure that I am on the right track? Where do I start?

When you study abroad with Arcadia, you are provided with a wealth of resources and staff ready to assist you with any questions you may have! The best place to start is with your Study Abroad adviser, however, you can find additional resources below:

How can I explain to my family that a study abroad experience can contribute to achievement of my academic and career goals?

Start by preparing the necessary information you will need to share with our family. For example, highlighting your program choice and how it connects with your academic interests is a great way to showcase how study abroad is an integral part of an Arcadia education. Other areas to stress are the use of financial aid and scholarships for study abroad, the support you will receive during the application process and while abroad, and how study abroad will assist in graduating in a timely manner through the credit you will earn.


LGBTQIA+ Students

What should I consider when choosing a study abroad program?

Cultures vary in terms of how sexual and gender identities are defined and understood. You will find that attitudes and tolerance toward gay, lesbian, bisexual, and trans issues vary from country to country, and possibly even within each country, as they do here in the US. Some countries are more welcoming and legally protective than the US, while others are less accepting and more restrictive. Being knowledgeable about sexual identity and gender expression in the area where you will be studying will allow you to have a rewarding international experience.

What sort of support will I have overseas?

Arcadia programs have plenty of in-country staff who can help you with any issues you have - from financial to housing to getting over culture shock. They are also a resource if you have any questions or concerns regarding your identity or experiences with discrimination. They should be your first stop for any issue that you have while abroad.

The College of Global Studies also has a 24/7 emergency support team here in the US and you will also be provided with other emergency contacts such as US consulate information during orientation.

Can I see a therapist or counselor while overseas?

Yes. Students are covered by your international health insurance while studying abroad and can see a therapist or counselor in person or virtually. It is best to plan early around your mental health so we recommend connecting with to our Health & Safety Team to take the first steps to scheduling appointments before you depart the US. Talk to your Program Advisor and ask them to put you in touch with our Health & Safety Team.